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5 Recovery Mantras to Help on a Tough Day at Work

You’ve probably heard of a recovery mantra – a slogan or quote that helps anchor recovery principles in an easy, memorable way. These powerful tools are backed by wisdom to help you on tough days, so having a few in your back pocket can be highly beneficial to strengthen and support your recovery.

One of the greatest values of a recovery mantra is how it can help you beyond recovery – like at work. Think of the last bad day you had, or how you handled a difficult interaction with a coworker. What if you started applying these power-packed mantras to tough workplace moments?

Let’s Talk Mantras

Instead of getting caught up in anger when you’re confronted with a tough workplace scenario, replace your inner dialogue with a recovery mantra to help.

Here are a few mantras that can help you at work:

  • Progress, not perfection.

    It’s easy to be overly self-critical. Whether you’re working on a project or are trying to move up at work, try not to be perfect. Every effort to better yourself, personally or professionally, comes with high and low moments. Instead, look at your trajectory overall. Look how far you’ve come, look at what you’re learning, and learn to see the value in your failures. It’s all progress, no matter what. So the next time you’re battling perfectionism on the job, remember the mantra “Progress, not perfection.”

  • Nothing changes if nothing changes.

    A common slogan in recovery to help people realize that actions must change to support a recovery lifestyle, this can help at work, too. Whether you’re in a bad workplace or are looking for more, the only person you can control is you. Change what you can and move forward with an attitude of positivity. Don’t show up at work doing the same thing you’ve always done, expecting to get different results, and remember – “nothing changes if nothing changes,” starting with you.

  • Wherever you go, there you are.

    The nature of addiction can make it difficult finding a job. Whether you just got out of treatment, are more focused on recovery than you are your career, or if you’re battling a tough criminal record that has made it hard to land a job, try not to get too down on yourself.  Consider the inspiring story of Suzula Bidon, a person in long-term recovery who after spending time in prison got out and became a lawyer. The journey wasn’t easy and was filled with barriers, setbacks and difficult trials. But her story is a powerful reminder to be present as you walk the journey because there are lessons to be had every step of the way.

    So remember, no matter where you are in your career or recovery, wherever you go, there you are. Learn to accept every part of the journey and be the best you can be in recovery every day, no matter what.

  • Do the next right thing.

    Say this one every day – “just do the next right thing.” You can’t change your boss, you can’t change how other people respond to a situation – but you can control your actions. Isn’t that empowering? It’s not always easy to remember, but use this mantra to help you try. If you’re confronted with many choices, or the opportunity to respond in aggression or anger, do the next right thing within your control. Even if you need to take a moment to pause, gain your composure and decide what the best next step is, in a moment of difficulty, making one small right can set off a positive domino effect – like opportunities to build character and gain wisdom.

  • One day at a time.

    Hand-in-hand with doing the next right thing, focus on doing what you can one day at a time. Big successes are only achieved through small moments of consistent dedication and motivation, day in and day out. You might be thinking about starting a business, finishing your degree or landing a big promotion. These are great aspirations to have, but know that they will only be achieved by taking small steps day-by-day, anchored in your big picture goal. Try to avoid getting overwhelmed or caught up in the future idea of success, and instead learn to be diligent and tenacious every day, and see how it catalyzes your work ethic and hustle.

What Are Your Recovery Mantras?

No matter what your job is or where you are in your career, having anchoring mantras can help you on a tough day in your recovery and on the job. Have more to share? Share your mantras and join the conversation on Twitter with @tori_utley and @Recovery_org.



Images Courtesy of iStock

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